News from Ashlora – May/2017

Welcome, welcome our 50th follower, DouglasWTSmith!

I’ve just finished updating all published scenes to the latest version. There are quite a number of changes in dialogues, word usage and other minor details. Rest assure, these are only quality of life changes and there’s no need to re-read these scenes going forwards (albeit if anyone do go back and read them, I can guarantee a much smoother read).

There’s one other change I’ll need to mention before I stop being so meta again; the scene posts are now tagged with “Scene” tag, allowing readers to quickly separate these posts from the monthly “Commentary” posts.

https://fujihita.wordpress.com/tag/scene/

https://fujihita.wordpress.com/tag/commentary/

Alright! Let’s get to the meat of this News from Ashlora issue: White Destiny, chapter 2.

THE PLOT THICKENS

There’s an unmistakable shift in narrative tone in chapter 2. It is darker and edgier than before. I expect no less from the backstory of the saddest being in Ashlora.

As stated in March’s commentary, the witch and the princess are the two antagonistic forces to overcome. They are explored in greater depth in this chapter. The witch receives more characterizations while the princess puts the “call to adventure” and her story arc to action.

Let’s talk about Eliot, the witch.

Eliot is an immortal. She is not bounded by the morality values of the mortal. Eighty years, a lifetime, to her, is a mere week plus Monday. Her backstory is plagued by “unwilling unions” and heart wrenching farewells (scene #5). There were, of course, lights of day in her dark background. But, given the context of telling a story that she would hate herself for, it is inevitable that the story the inventor got to hear was of grim, heretical and unsettling nature.

As for Lilia, the princess, the plot around her focuses on the classical idea of royal succession and the fight against determinism.

I can say, without being too spoilery, that her story is going to involve a lot of kinkiness, a lot of social class conflicts and a bit of gender discrimination. Leo, the inventor, is now signed up for a race to the princess’s heart, and what’s that other cold, hard and red thing around here? Right, the ruby throne.

The stakes for participation in this race have been made clear by the end of chapter 2 (scene #8). The inventor’s “insignificant” life is on the life. The rewards are the throne, the princess and her magical blood. Magical blood is a thing in Ashlora and if the price of the witch’s dead infants was of any indication, this will play a central role in both plot lines.

Where there are great rewards, there are even greater stakes. There’s a hint of a secession movement that keeps popping up here and there. There’s also this entire side plot involving the romance of Steve, the ironsmith and Katherine, the knight. And there’s still that dragon and the pet hydra he had at home.

I’m as clueless as any of you as to what will happen next. But, I can see delicious opportunities for a misunderstanding / love triangle plot just by the fact that the witch and the inventor are still living under the same roof, and the inventor has just gotten himself tangled in the princess’s love string.

WRITING TO THE STATISTICS

From the statistics I have on the scene containing the witch’s backstory, I can tell readers are not fond of dark humors. I’ll try to avoid going into details when it comes to this kind of things but I cannot promise there won’t be more disturbing revelations in the future. I’m writing about grey morality here and grey morality is disturbing by design.

I bring up the statistics. Since no one has ever commented on any of my posts, I can only guess the reader’s feedback from the percentage of the number of views and likes. As far as I can tell, people are okay with with some erotic elements (scene #7). I’ll keep them coming at the same level of attention until the stats indicate people want more or less of them.

This is pretty much what I’m doing with the little feedback you give me. I’ll tune my writing so that the desirable elements get more ink and the undesirable elements get skimmed down to Draft 1-tier one-line.

And that concludes this issue of News from Ashlora. Please drop some comments on what you like and dislike in my weekly releases. It’ll help, thanks.

News from Ashlora – Apr/2017

For this monthly News from Ashlora issue, I’ll provide an overview of Revision 4 and how White Destiny project is being crafted.

REVISION TIMELINE

Let’s talk about revisions. Revisions happen when a significant portion of the plot changes. Below is an overview of the timeline for each revision so far.

White Destiny timeline_rev4

For White Destiny, the first revision adapted the events from the original assassin games into story format. It still included a number of game elements such as Truth Serum, the Illuminati and the Vatican factions. The key conflict was between the witch plus Illuminati and the church. The “call to adventure” was the summoning of the horsemen of apocalypse and the unsealing of the seven Obelisks. The story in first revision started after angel summoning event and the early stages of Azeth’s rebellion.

The second revision expanded the universe, the character baron and priestess made their first debut in this revision. The city of Ironheart was introduced (previously, the entire scope was set within Azeth only). The main conflict and call to adventure remained the same from the first revision.  The story here started from before the bishop’s death event which set the stage for the princess and the witch’s encounter in God’s mercy (rev 2).

The third revision shifted the focus from the witch to the princess, with an attempt to exclude angel, demon and the likes from the plot. The main conflict revolves around the war for territory or “magic domain” between the witch and the archbishop, and the princess’s attempt to thwart the inventor’s Azeth-Ironheart war scheme. The story started a short while after the witch and the princess’s meeting and it was intended to last longer than the final battle between the witch and the archbishop.

Finally, the latest revision culled all cheese angel-demon-holy-war elements from the original game. Unlike all previous revisions, revision 4 is set on an entirely different timeline, starting with the dragon’s attack on the witch’s hut as the call to adventure all the way to the end of war and beyond. The focus of this revision is the inventor, his war scheme and the results of the princess’s meddling as established in rev 3.

I hope this recap clarifies the convoluted and confusing story excerpts I’ve been posting so far.

DRAFTING STAGES

This section explains the goals and purposes of each draft in my writing process. I intend to share this process as guidance for interested writer-to-be out there; by informing them the kind of serious business they’re signing up for. Who ever said editing a manuscript is only about proofreading and spellchecking? Plot doctoring and story crafting are serious business.

In the first draft, I’ll perform a number of revisions in order to determine a logical timeline for all events in the story, as well as a rough outline of the scenes. A viable example of a first draft scene can be as simple as…

The inventor wakes up in Steve’s forge. The place is unbelievably hot“.

First draft is guarantee to be flawed in one way or another. Plot holes can occur. Unexplained information can happen. While I write, I often move passages and change the way I introduce a given piece of information and then completely forget to put that piece of information back in before it’s needed. The prime example of this, I’ve only noticed recently, is the information on the three factions in Silverflow Council. I originally had a passage in scene #2 to explain how the votes in Silverflow Council were distributed among three factions:

“Born a woman of the prestige Silverflow family, she were given four permanent seats in the council—half of those given to the Ruby Garden—the moment her gender was determined. Within the Silverflow family, only female could succeed the crown.
In her twenties, she studied clergy under the Archbishop’s guidance and earned a priestess title in the Church of the Saint. When she returned to Ironheart, her clergy privileges were transferred to the local Church of the Spirit and this earned her two seats from to the church. Later on, she became more active in Silverflow Academy and had recently snatched the rank of master in Alchemy from Leo. She also claimed her eighth vote in the council in Wizardry in the same year. Not from Leo, of course, but from the old court wizard of Solaris Observatory who had gone missing recently”

The above passage did not make it to blog release. Without this explanation, some of the vote counting and name (title) calling in scene #3 can be hard to understand. I obviously know the purpose and reason behind all the interactions as I’m the author, but the readers won’t.

This is why in the second draft, I aim to address this information discrepancy and make appropriate changes so that readers can understand what they’re supposed to understand. This is also when I place foreshadows, hints and bread crumbs so that readers don’t feel I’m pulling a fast one on them. This step usually involves alpha readers who are willing to go in dry, focusing more on the character, world building and plot holes than on the presentation, storytelling and whatnot.

Third draft makes the second draft manuscript more pleasing to the eye. That means lots of purple prose, scenery porn and audio-visual. The sample line I mentioned in first draft would look a bit like the following after third draft

“Sometime after the council meeting, Leo found himself occupying the carpentry table at Steve’s.

In the air was the sizzling of blue steel in white water, the crackles of red flame on dark charcoals, and the rumble of hammer hoisted above the chestnut hair on black anvil. The building was crazy hot. Wood splinters dug themselves into his back. Yet, when he was dead-exhausted, they were surprisingly pleasant.”

And yes, the scenes I published in this WordPress blog do contain some third draft’s quality elements but the quality is not uniform across the board. Many elements are still at bare bone first draft’s quality, only a few easy ones I can come up with right away have third draft’s quality. The official third draft brings the quality of every element in the story up to a uniform degree, unlike the unevenness we have in blog releases.

Finally, I’ll go over the manuscript another time with a surgical knife to make the cut. The idea here is to trim the excesses so that the writing is more “show than tell”. Some of the explanations added in second drafts will also be changed or removed if I deem the implications are sufficient and the readers are smart enough to connect the dots themselves. In the third-draft passage above, my fourth draft’s cut is the line

The building was crazy hot

as all the audio-visual cues are already pointing to that idea, it’s excessive to repeat the point outright here.

Geez, I hope I didn’t scare any greenhorns…

We’ll have another News from Ashlora issue in the next two weeks (so soon!), in which I’ll stop being so meta and finally talk about what exactly is going on in Ashlora nowadays.

 

News from Ashlora – Mar/2017 #2

The 4th revision is now underway and I’m now posting the story by scenes instead of chapters.

For example, the first chapter “She is a pet hydra” has three scenes in total and they make up around 3000 words; slightly greater than the usual 2500 words / chapter goal. I have only posted the first scene here, two more to go later.

BLOGGING REVISION 4

Blogging the book in smaller chunks helps fight the urge to edit old parts. I’m, for the most part, hesitant when it comes to editing published chapters so I tend to hold on to them for as long as possible and editing the heck out of them. This sometimes leads me into an endless rewriting loop and prevents releases for extended period of time.

It is also easier to read and much less scrolling as well so why the heck not?

This time, I’ll try to post the scenes as frequent as possible and I’ll follow a one-week release schedule. Every Thursday starting this week (plus or minus one day), I’ll be releasing a scene from the book. A commentary post will be done after every chapter and/or every new month, whichever comes first.

At the average rate of 3-4 scenes a chapter this means I’ll be releasing a chapter a month. It is going to be a huge commitment but I have three months of free time so let’s see how long I can keep this going.

TECHNOLOGIES & CURRENCY

In the first scene, several familiar technologies were introduced to the world of Ashlora. We have the ice box aka refrigerator; widely adopted and publicly employed; and zeppelins equipped with cannons. The cannons are better known by the public, the zeppelins remain in the dark at this point. Other technologies such as machine press and chemical synthesis are also revealed in the first chapter. Everything is likely to be steampunk, magic-powered or hydraulic. The development rate might differ from our world due to cultural and planetary factors.

Considering the city is based on mining, smithing and crafting, it makes senses for explosive to be developed and adopted first, then machine manufacture and refining technologies.

Breakthroughs in medicine, chemistry and food preservation are likely stemmed from the fact that the city is under attack by a plague and famine modeled after the Black Death that brought Roman empire to its knees.

Weaponry begins to see development when Ironheart sees a philosophical awareness of its own standing in the world and grows resentful of its oppressive ruler in the city of Azeth. But that, is the story for another day.

The common currency of Ashlora is called “Pris”. There exist other currencies on the rim of the world, in civilizations outside Azeth’s sphere of influence. I might mention these civilizations in passing “coffee beans” references just to spice things up every now and then but they are beyond the scope of the current narrative.

News from Ashlora – Mar/2017 #1

It’s great to be back.

It’s been four months since the last News from Ashlora issue. Progress has been glacial as usual, I’m starting to think this project might not work out after all. But, I’m not giving up just yet. There’s still one more central character plot I can explore: the Inventor.

LEO THE INVENTOR

There’s a whole different cast of characters surrounding the Inventor and his story focused on very mundane problems different from the Witch and the Priestess’s plot driver. The main driver of the previous two narrators is external and these characters are set up by circumstances for internal changes.

Unlike the other two narrators who derived their internal goal from the circumstances, the Inventor starts off with an agenda and he’ll use the circumstances to drive his own goal. In fact, almost everything that happened in the Witch and the Priestess’s narrative was a part of his grand scheme to alter the political landscape of Ashlora.

The list of characters who will be deeply involved in his plotline are:

– Sir Richard, the Baron

– Steve, the Ironsmith

– Felacia, the Bishop

– Alex, the Informat

– Katherine, the Knight

Turn out, Princess Lilia and Eliot the Witch won’t be key actors in this narrative. They are, instead, the goals, the antagonistic forces to overcome. I’m omitting Morgan the Scholar character for now as his story started after the Inventor’s great scheme had ended.

One more new development in this iteration, four characters are now revealed to have fancy full names to reflect their culture: Eliot Gradren Alse Forse, Leonardo de Price, Alexander D’Amore, and Richard Gregory.

I’m just jotting these names down here to finalize them, I plan to come up with a full name for Katherine and Felacia as well but nothing solid came to mind yet.

A TORUS WORLD

When I explored the idea of a torus (doughnut-shaped) world, I discovered a few key implications that conveninently explain parts of Ashlora’s lore.

In a torus world, the moon can oscillate up and down through the center hole of the planet many times in the same solar day, most suitably in a vase orbit that will result in varying moon sizes depending on the season. This matches the “Prism cycle” and “great blue moon” concept observed by the Witch in chapter 4 of her narrative.

In addition, it might be possible to observe the other side of the world through the center hole. It would be day in Azeth when it was night in Ironheart. Someone with a giant telescope would be able to observe the stretch of lit up land at the far end of the night sky. This justifies the existence of the Solaris Observatory as an espionage instrument.

This also implies the sky city of Fa’el might actually be…on the moon (or a piece of land stuck between the moon’s and the earth’s gravitational field). There are other military applications of a vase orbit moon, an aerial attack from Azeth to Ironheart can be prepared half lunar-cycle ahead of time and launched from the moon when it is closest to the target city.

Or, in the case of the Archbishop’s dragon, it can just use the moon’s gravitation field to slingshot itself to Ironheart. This makes the concept “Light of Azeth” in the very first draft of this novel (and on the goddamn cover!) essentially a space elevator; an extremely powerful asset in a world where people still ride horses.

A CONFUSING TIME DIVISION

With these special characteristics of a torus world, it is inevitable that the perception of time in Ashlora would be different from ours.

In our world, day and night are marked by the rise and set of the sun. This idea remains the same in Ashlora, except in a Torus world, a solar day would last a lot longer; so much so that a “day” in Ashlora is essentially the equivalence of a month in our world!

So what is the equivalence of our day in Ashlora? A “moon”, is the closest equivalence. In Ashlora, the moon tranverses the sky thirty-two times in a solar day. The first moon starts at sunset and the sixteen moon marks sunrise.

Assuming the solar orbit remains the same as our world, a “season” in Ashlora would consist of only three “solar days” and when they say “week”, they mean “6 days” or “half a year”.

The concept of month is phased out completely.

The least confusing part of this entirely new time division system is “year”, which is roughly the same length as our year.

To sum it up, in Ashlora

Year = 2 weeks = 4 seasons = 12 days = 384 moons = 384 Earth’s days

“Hours”, in our world, originated from a set of 24 stars across the sky. Since stars don’t have any plot influence, I might as well just make the assumption that there were the same 24 stars in Ashlora’s night sky and the concept of hours evolved in the same manner.

Luckily, the concept of “minutes” and “seconds” are not tied to any astronomial phenomenon and I can keep them the same 60 seconds a minute and 60 minutes an hour like in our world.

A moon starts with a period of darkness, then a time of lunar daylight (when the moon goes overhead and reflects the most sunlight) and then another period of darkness as the moon goes down. Due to the moon’s deceleration towards the extremes of its orbit, a lunar day is generally very brief and lasts only a few hours, typically from 9AM to 3PM and drastically shorter in winter.

That’s it for this issue of News from Ashlora!

Expect a second commentary on White Destiny project and finally an actual excerpt from the novel on either the Silverflow Council or the character Ironsmith within the month. It’s a promise!


Read more:

http://io9.gizmodo.com/what-would-the-earth-be-like-if-it-was-the-shape-of-a-d-1515700296

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/experts-time-division-days-hours-minutes/

News from Ashlora – Oct/2016

For newcomers to the novel, you can find all the information about White Destiny here or by searching the tag “White Destiny”.

It’s been a while since I last posted a writing update. I haven’t forgotten about my novel projects, I was only busy brushing up on programming and web development. Prior to the web dev hype, I spent some time reviewing the novel plans after Camp NaNoWriMo sent me a youtube link to Robert Mckee.

Some of his most eye-opening videos are on multiple protangonists, non-linear storytelling, and dialogues. There is one interesting video on setting as well but it’s something I’ve already known.

Now just like what you would expect from an amateur writer, watching Mckee conferences and listening to his lecture on storytelling for the first time, I felt like I had been doing the world a disservice with my junk writing. I made the first revision with his advice in mind in August but the cuts were rough and the sub-plots did not flow well together.

KATHERINE, THE ELITE KNIGHT

In the end, I had to bring the Bishop of Ironheart back and add yet another character to the novel. Her name is Katherine, a strong elite knight who learned of the Witch’s identity in the beginning of the story. Like the Bishop, she plays the support role, allowing everyone else to indulge in plot-dispensing expositions during the world-building phase.

Why a female knight, though? Well, it’s because she can be more involved in the Princess and the Ironsmith’s relationship later on, acting as the catalyst, best friend and love rival. A love triangle! What can possibly go wrong?

NOW WE’RE BACK TO POSTS

Pages are cool but they lack exposure. I realized if the writing was not presented in the post, no one would bother clicking the link. That’s only one reason though. More importantly, pages have no history. Pages have only one address. I want to be able to share old versions of the chapters as well as latest ones. It’s a bother to do so in pages when posts are doing it automatically.

So, the compromise is, I’ll be releasing new chapters and revisions to posts and archive the latest revisions to pages. Those who want to read older revisions are welcome to do so using search function. Those who want only the latest revision can go to the pages. Commentaries will have the title “News from Ashlora – Month/Year”. Append and edit “1/3”, “2/3”, etc. if there are more than one commentary in that month.

FRESH NEW PERSPECTIVE

I’m bored with the Witch’s view after a while. I need a change of pace. Therefore, I’m writing the Princess’s part for the time being. The story starts one month after the Princess and the Witch joined force. The early portions are mostly slice-of-life world-building so I decided to kick off the story with a fight scene. They bashed some heads, slew some bandits, roasted some peasants and threw some bone-chilling spells.

Pretty cool way to say “fantasy!” eh?

While we are at it, I should mention a new tweak to the magic system. There are several ways to cast spells in Ashlora. Wordless spells are the weakest, next are wandless spells and finally focus spells, which are cast with a focus (wand or rosary). To clarify, a wordless spell cast with a focus is still a wordless spell. These are originally special skills exclusive to the Witch but I decided to make them universal. This means the next time someone tie up a mage, they will take extra precaution against wordless magic.

There will be more information on the magic system and some bit and pieces on languages in the next chapter, please look forward to it.

Commentary: Life of the Witch

For newcomers to the novel, you can find all the information about White Destiny here or by searching the tag “White Destiny”.

Riding on the momentum of chapter 6, I spent two all-nighters updating past chapters to the latest version of Ashlora. I admit, the depiction of life in Les Miserable has a great impact on the recent changes I made to White Destiny. It seems I now have a tendency to write life, especially life in regions of the plague, at its most wretched. And with the revision of chapter 4, I also have a tendency to include musical segments in the story as well, courtesy by Les Miserable the movie.

And the Witch, being at the center of the plague, was affected the most. Hence, in the latest revision, the vibe of the Witch character in chapter 3 is brought in line with that of chapter 6.

THE LAND OF WRETCH

I added West Rufus and Fa’el to The lands of Ashlora overview.

West Rufus received major expansions in chapter 6, there are now an underground market, a workshop and a glimpse into the life of the people there. It might not sound much in term of world-building but this is a huge improvement to the Witch character. I originally intended for the Witch to receive her supplies from Ironheart via the bishop and the Inventor but in the latest revision, she can now trade and purchase supplies in West Rufus. The area is inhabited by outcasts and criminals; the kind of characters who are more than willing to make trade with the Black Witch.

More importantly, West Rufus and its decline was revealed in the latest revision of chapter 3. The Witch played the role of a historian in West Rufus’s decline, she witnessed the degradation of men in the aftermath of the plague. And the Church played the role of a  villain in the whole event. For the Witch, the injustice she witnessed that day marked the turning point of her character; it left her broken as a person but completed as a survivor.

SEDUCTIVE AND DEADLY

There’s one thing I love about the Witch character: her admirable survival instinct. She may be willing to give up all she has, including her virtues, for the ones closest to her but she never gives up her life for anyone. Her will to survive allows her to commit atrocious crimes, dishonorable acts and many, many deeds fitting her Chaotic Neutral alignment. This trait she inherited from being at the bottom of social ladder differentiates the Witch from the Baron, the Archbishop and, ultimately, the Priestess.

I used to worry about her state of mind, living all alone in the Dark Forest and hated by almost everyone. If anything, I have to consider her actions in chapter 3 and 6 borderline insane and I’m pleased the writing gives off that vibe, even though it was unintentional. I think I know the secret of writing nutjob characters. It involves pulling all-nighters and writing on until the brain goes numb, at which point the brain will flip the table screaming “screw this, let’s kill everyone” like a gun-tottering madman in an opera house.

Deadly aspect asides, I remember Tetisheri once asked me whether the Witch had always been self-conscious and seductive from the start (this is because the corrupted version of the Witch in Black Existence was depicted as extremely seductive). I kept her question in mind and now I finally can give her a definitive answer:

“Yes, Eliot is aware of her natural charm from the start and she does not hesitate to use it. Just that, prior to the corruption, she’s not bold enough to go all the way. Except when it was the last request, like in the case of the bishop of Ironheart.”

A HUNDRED PAGES OF PREPARATION

It’s another thing I learned from Les Miserable. Each character in Les Miserable received over a hundred pages of backstory and development prior to the main story. I don’t plan to spend that many pages on pre-story material but I’m reminded of how naive my writing has been when it comes to interaction of past events and the view of a character.

In other words, I need more slice-of-life side stories and expositions to build characters for the main story.

So, from now on, I’ll devote a significant portion of each chapter to a side story and idle chatters that may or may not have any relation to the main story. Things like: the spread of the rewritten nursery rhyme in chapter 6, various quality of life in the Dark Forest remarks in chapter 3, misconception and the Inventor’s secret partnership with the Witch in chapter 2, etc. will become more prevalent in the future.

TL;DR:

Updated chapter 2, 3 and 4. Also, updated “the lands of Ashlora” page. Oh and, sexy and deadly Witch in chapter 3, nuff said.

White Destiny [Commentary #1]

Those who have been following this blog must know that I have a long-running novel project called “White Destiny”. The story is about a witch hunt started by the murder of a bishop which eventually unveils a holy war between two immortal factions through means of soul contract.

Indeed while I have been on it since July 2014, I have never sat down long enough to write something worth half a novella, let alone a novel. The attempt this year by far has yielded the most progress. Optimistically speaking, the two-month hold-off after Chapter 5: Burden of Proof is to reevaluate White Destiny as a whole. In reality, I have been hitting the writing block and dealing with a few real life issues.

And Skyrim…

As mentioned long ago, White Destiny was originally a game whose plot is dictated by game mechanics and players’ decisions. There were many things going on at the same time in-game. At any given moment, there could be three or four character story arcs happening.

In the upcoming chapters, I’ll need to go over the missing story in the Witch’s narrative between the time after her meeting with the Bishop and the time she spent at Brown’s Boulder tavern. Before that, I’m afraid readers will have to sit down for yet another detour as The Scholar’s character arc resumes from chapter 2.

I wish to capture the simultaneity in novel format but it has become clear that all the detours are going to bog down the story rhyme as a whole. The built up tension in Chapter 5 will be lost if readers have to wait yet another two flashback chapters before the cast even starts fighting the Horseman of Death; and god knows how many more flashbacks before the battle may conclude.

I planned the novel to span across 15 chapters, max 20. However, with so many things going on, this won’t end before chapter 30.

I don’t want a lengthy story, I want a concise story.

A few prospective readers asked me a simple question that I have long failed to answer. They asked “What’s it about?”. In other words, they wanted me to provide a 20-word summary of White Destiny and show them why they should read it.

Yes, I had a summary, a long one which covers just the game-original story, which sounds grand and all but way too cryptic and too broad for the uninitiated. The revised introduction, not a summary, is this:

As the Archbishop had prophesied, Father Felacia was found dead in the Black Forest three days after his visit to Azeth. Seeking vengeance for her late father, Lilia, the Priestess, gathered an adventure party to raid the Witch’s hut. But, only one Militia answered her call.

Better? I hope so. I personally feel it’s more attractive because it centers on the first arc only, without any spoilery details of the other arcs.

More than just a neat introduction, this serves as the new project’s direction. I have made corrections to the plot so that the Archangel’s summoning happens earlier while demoting the Scholar’s story to background and giving Lilia aka the White Priestess the appropriate attention as White Destiny’s protagonist. The Black Witch can have her share of the limelight in Black Existence.

There are hiccups in doing so, of course, but with Death and the Devil’s appearance in Chapter 5, the Holy War is upon us already.

Speaking of which, Chapter 5’s pacing is a mess. I admit, I don’t like the Priestess and the Inventor’s debate. The ideal seems great at the time, it’s not now that I look at it. Then we have the Witch’s childish and cliche actions when she finally showed up after two chapters.

Alas, I realized half way through writing the next chapter that it’s too early for the big boss to show up. I should have edited him out of the scenario instead of faithfully following the original game’s progression.

This weekends I spent making up excuses and changing a great deal of background reasoning to make his appearance logical. It’s been hard work indeed but I finally got over the tough part. I’m going to leave chapter 6 in the brewery for careful proofread and plot diagnosis in another week or two.

Meanwhile I’m going to purge the ugh! parts from Chapter 5.

God has mercy, I have committed a sin.